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Search by File Type

Thursday, June 2nd, 2005 by | Filed Under: Shortcuts & Keyboard Tricks

Searching for files on your computer isn’t that complicated. Go to Start and you’ll see either “Find” or “Search” waiting to locate lost files. You can get as basic or specific as you want—just keep in mind that you have a better chance with more general searches.

A neat feature in Windows XP is searching by type. Rather than look through all files you can search for just pictures, music, or video. You could look for only documents created in a certain period of time.

In the Search Companion window you’ll see “What do you want to search for?” and a list: Pictures, music, or video; Documents; All files and folders; Computers or People.


To search Digital Media you can select any or all of the check boxes: Pictures and Photos, Music, or Video. Type in a file name, part of a name, or file extension (.mp3, .jpg) then click “Search”.


The results will pop up in the left pane like any other search. if the file you want is there, just double click.

When searching Documents you can specify the last time it was modified. The search begins in “My Documents” then works its way out from there.


You’ll get documents and only documents—no folders, no hidden files, no exe files.

Check out the advanced settings for even more search fun.

~ David

* Windows 98 Users can go to Start/Find then “Files or folders”. Select the “Advanced” tab and you can select what file type (jpg, mp3, etc.) to search for.

David Samuel Thomas

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